Staff Sgt. Amber Robinson
U.S. Army-Pacific Public Affairs
HONOLULU — Soldiers and civilians within U.S. Pacific Command and from across the Asia-Pacific intelligence community attended the third annual Pacific Command Asia-Pacific Multinational Open Source Conference, here, recently.
The conference focused on the power of open source intelligence, or OSINT.
“What we were really hoping to build upon during this event is the OSINT Community of Interest,” said Col. Raul Escribano, director of Intelligence, U.S. Army-Pacific. “We are proud to be PACOM’s lead service for open source. We want to make all relevant open source material available to those in our Asian-Pacific community at a moment’s notice. How we can better do that was a huge part of our discussion here at the conference.”
According to Escribano and other members of the USARPAC team, OSINT is usually the first line of intelligence any commander receives during a crisis.
“We can push the information fast and to a large amount of people without classification or administrative constraints,” Escribano said. “Open source info can be pushed to decision makers in a relevant and timely manner. It’s highly effective. ”
“Open source information is easily shareable,” said R.J. Glover, OSINT senior analyst, USARPAC. “Open source information is the best mechanism for partnering nations and allies to share info and to support information requirements and multinational operations. This information is inherently shareable, giving it the ability to move through various international organizations and echelons very, very quickly.”
The conference included large group presentations and small group panel discussions.
“The intent of our small groups was to generate intimate discussion among nations and organizations about various topics,” Escribano said. “Every nation had something to contribute to this cooperative effort. The power of this conference is that we (could) find solutions to complex problems through the lens of the multinational community. Each group discussed new ideas and initiatives on how OSINT can continue to facilitate better answers to various problem sets.”
Closing speaker for the conference was Maj. Gen. Roger Mathews, deputy commander, USARPAC.
“In our arena, information is king,” Mathews said. “Open source information is what drives our train. It drives what I do; it drives what my boss does. It makes a huge difference for our country and for yours.”
Participating Asia-Pacific nations included Australia, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Singapore and Thailand.